If you’re serious about photography, you’ll probably want to buy a digital camera. And if you already have one, you’ll know that the quality of photos you can take with these devices is nothing short of excellent.
However, using a digital camera is not always the best choice. Sometimes the convenience of your smartphone outweighs most of the benefits of using a proper camera. These scenarios may vary; safety can sometimes be paramount. But in other cases, wanting to capture something fast is the name of the game.
This article will highlight when smartphone photography trumps a digital camera.
1. When you want to be discreet
Travel photography is an exciting genre, and capturing your experiences with a digital camera is great fun. But unfortunately, you will find yourself in some cities and countries where flaunting it can put you at risk.
Using your smartphone is often the best bet when you want to remain discreet. Opening your camera app takes less time than turning on your digital camera and toggling the settings. In addition, your smartphone is easier to store.
Of course, you’ll always want to do your due diligence when using your smartphone. Observe the situation and determine if it is safe to take photos and if you are even allowed to do so.
2. When you want to capture something fast
Depending on where you are, using a digital camera isn’t always the best way to capture memories. Having one with you at all times is great, but sometimes it’s inconvenient to take it out of your bag to film something. And by the time you have, the moment may have already passed.
For example, if you are going out with relatives, it is much easier to take a photo on your smartphone. Likewise, having your phone is great for documenting those important life moments, like your child’s first steps.
Even if you just capture a quick photo with your smartphone, you can still make it look professional later. Adobe Lightroom has a mobile app, and Photoshop Express is also a great tool for quick editing.
3. When you don’t have enough room in your suitcase
You will need to think carefully about the camera equipment you will take on your travels. Taking smaller bodies and lenses is a great way to travel lighter. But sometimes you might not want to carry extra gear with you.
Let’s say you don’t care too much about taking the best photos possible on a trip, you just want to capture the moments that matter to you. In this case, you might find your smartphone much more convenient.
Using your smartphone for photography will leave more space in your bags for the other essentials you need. Plus, you can relax and focus on having a good time.
4. Take underwater photos
Underwater photography is no small feat and unfortunately most cameras are not equipped for it. Even weatherproof cameras have their limitations; they might save you in a rain shower, but submerging them for long periods of time will likely cause long-term damage.
If you want to take pictures underwater with a digital camera, you will need to purchase a specialized camera. What’s the alternative if you don’t want to worry about additional equipment? Simple; use your smartphone!
Many modern smartphones are water resistant; you can also get cases to protect them underwater. However, you will still need to be careful; water resistant does not mean waterproof.
5. Activities where bringing a digital camera isn’t ideal
Sometimes the best photo opportunities come in situations where it’s not practical to bring a digital camera. Exercise is one of many examples; how many times have you gone for a morning jog and seen an amazing sunrise?
When doing activities like exercise, smartphone photography is king. You can use your camera to quickly capture things you find pretty, and it’s also good for photographing your form while weightlifting.
If you’re at a party, you’ll probably find it easier to use your smartphone instead of bringing a camera. You can take as many photos as you want without having to constantly change your camera settings or make sure it’s safe.
6. When you attend an event as a spectator
Attending live events is often one of the most memorable experiences of our lives. But picking up a digital camera isn’t always ideal if you’re watching your favorite sports team play or attending a concert by an artist you love.
You may be able to use a digital camera, but you could also get in the way of other people or even have your camera confiscated, especially if you have a larger DSLR. And again, it’s not ideal to turn it on or toggling with the settings. Instead, you better grab whatever you want on your smartphone and enjoy the rest of the event.
7. Become familiar with the basics of photography
If you’re new to photography, it’s often best to start with a simple camera. Digital cameras have excellent image quality, but the wide range of settings can sometimes be a distraction.
Smartphones allow you to learn basic photography skills like composition and lighting. Since you’re often more limited with smartphone photography, you need to think outside the box to capture more creative photos, and that will make you a better photographer in the long run.
Before buying a digital camera, consider spending at least six months taking photos with your smartphone. You’ll have a much smaller learning curve when you upgrade to a real camera.
8. When you can’t afford a digital camera
Although digital cameras are fun to own, we can’t get around the fact that they are often quite expensive. And no matter how badly you want to do something, you should think twice before buying something you can’t afford.
It’s better to wait and save for the camera you want than to pick something you can’t afford or aren’t particularly interested in.
Since you already have your smartphone handy, you don’t have to worry about delaying your photographic journey. Plus, you might surprise yourself with the styles of images you can take.
Once you’ve saved enough, you can always save money by buying second-hand photography equipment.
Sometimes smartphone photography is just better
It’s easy to look at the best photographers in the world and envy their camera gear. But while owning camera lenses and bodies is great, the best camera is often the one you have in your pocket.
Smartphone photography is a versatile way to capture the moments that matter to you. And thanks to the marvels of modern technology, you can always modify them to make them look professional.